Sustainable business

Waverley Council encourages businesses to reduce waste, conserve energy, and prevent litter pollution. Embedding sustainability into your business can save you money and improve your reputation in addition to benefit ting the environment. Here are some ways to operate your business more sustainably.

Reduce your business waste

Reduce your reliance on single use items

Straws, cups and takeaway containers are some of the most commonly littered items on our beaches and streets. Use reusable cutlery, cups and dishes for dine-in customers. For take-away customers, encourage them to bring their own containers and cups, or join a local cup exchange program. Download our tip sheet for unwrapping your business.

Ask suppliers for more sustainable delivery packaging

Ask your suppliers to eliminate excess packaging (such as plastic wrap) or to swap bulky and polluting materials such as Styrofoam for recyclable or reusable materials. Put the onus on your suppliers to take back their packaging after delivering goods, so that it becomes their responsibility to consider disposal measures.

Reduce food waste with the Your Business is Food program

If you own or manage a food business, reducing the amount of food you throw out will help you cut costs and increase profits. Love Food Hate Waste is a program run by the NSW EPA. Register for their free Your Business is Food program and reap the benefits of reduced food waste.

Donate surplus prepared food

If your business has excess food, consider donating it to rescue organisations such as Ozharvest or SecondBite.

Upgrade your equipment to reduce waste

If you’re a microbusiness, Waverley Council’s Environment Grants aim to support environmental improvement projects and initiatives.

For Waverley businesses with up to 400 staff, NSW Bin Trim Rebates can provide funding of between $1,000 and $50,000 to cover up to 50% of the capital cost to purchase recycling or waste management equipment such as milk dispensers or bottle crushers.

Manage your business waste and recycling responsibly

Have a plan for waste

Help staff and cleaners by keeping information about what you do with your waste, where it’s stored, waste contractors, and key contact information to refer to in case of emergency. Place this information in a common area like the bin room where it is easily accessible.

Adjust services to handle peak activity

To reduce costs and ensure adequate capacity, ask your waste and recycling service provider to adjust your service to accommodate busy periods, whether seasonally or monthly. This could mean ordering extra pick-ups or adjusting the number of bins you put out for collection.

Store waste properly

Store bins within your business site boundaries to avoid attracting dumping. Ensure that all the waste and recycling generated at your property goes inside a bin or container to avoid attracting vermin.

Keep footpaths clean and clear

Present bins no sooner than the close of business the night before collection day and bring them in as soon as possible after the bins have been collected. Bins should be presented for collection immediately out front of your property or in an agreed upon area.

Present waste in containers with lids closed

Bin too full? Overfull bins with popped up lids, or bagged rubbish outside of bins, can attract pests or vermin and contribute to windblown litter. Keep the excess waste for the next collection day or arrange to increase your service frequency to ensure all waste is containerised.

If you have large waste items that don’t fit in the bin such as cardboard, break down large cardboard into smaller pieces and place inside bins. If large items are too large to fit in the bin, contact a private contractor to collect the item for disposal.

Help staff with signage

Need bin area signage for staff or cleaners? Order free signs by emailing

Consider an organic waste collection service

If your business generates significant food waste, consider separating food waste from your general waste bin for organics collection. This can reduce significant waste to landfill and potentially reduce bin storage requirements. Talk to your current waste collector to ask if they provide an organics service, or search under Food and Food & Packaging categories to find suppliers.

Give litter the clean sweep

Sweeping litter outside your property each day makes your storefront look inviting and shows customers that your business takes cleanliness seriously. Keeping a broom and scoop at the front door of your business is a good reminder to sweep up at the end of business hours. Get your staff invested in maintaining a clean space by rostering regular litter clean-up events.

Bin cigarette butts

If cigarette butt litter is accumulating in the areas surrounding your business, contact Waverley Council and request the installation of an enviropole (cigarette butt bin). Council will assess the situation and provide butt bins as required. Contact to enquire.  All the cigarette butts collected in enviropoles in the Waverley area recycled into new outdoor furniture and garden supplies.

Report dumping

If other businesses or residents are putting their waste on the ground around your bins or in the general area outside your property, this is considered illegal dumping. Please report all incidents to the Sydney Regional Illegal Dumping (RID) squad for investigation at

Join the Compost Revolution

Businesses in Waverley can receive free compost bins and consultancy for composting. Email us or call 9083 8112 to find out more out the year.

Transition to renewable energy

Businesses that rent can reap the benefits of cheaper renewable energy with the SunTenants program. The program offers landlords support on choosing and installing the best solar for their site, helping tenants and landlords agree to a fair rent increase, and guaranteeing that tenants save more in bills than what they may pay in rent increases. Learn more at

For more energy saving tips for your business, visit our Saving Energy at Work page.

Save water in your business

How well do you know how to save water? For tips on how to save water and reduce costs in your business, visit our Water Saving at Work page.

Apply for grants and funding

There are a number of opportunities for businesses in Waverley to receive grant funding, which can be used for sustainability improvements.

  1. Waverley Council’s Environment Grants for microbusiness (aims to support environmental improvement projects and initiatives.
  2. The NSW EPA offers Bin Trim rebates of between $1,000 and $50,000 to cover up to 50% of the cost of recycling equipment.
  3. Jobs for NSW offers financial support for innovative start-ups and scaling small to medium enterprises.
  4. helps you find grants, funding and support programs from across government to help your business grow and succeed.

Source and sell sustainable products and services

Eligible businesses can use the Sustainable Choice Supplier Database to source or sell sustainable products and/or services. To register as a seller, a business must demonstrate that they offer products and/or services that are eco-friendly, socially responsible and economically viable. By supporting sustainable products with recycled content or sustainable business services, you are helping to create a circular economy in Waverley.

Get involved with the community

Clean Up Australia Day inspires and empowers communities to come together to pick up litter and prevent it from entering our waterways, and eventually the ocean where it can impact marine and human health. Businesses can get involved with Clean Up Australia Day each March, or organise clean ups throughout the year. Get involved.

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